I wrote a column recently about how ‘dirty’ hair is easier to style. Now I want to talk about how wonderful it is to have clean hair and how to get it.
First, let me clarify about easy-to-style ‘dirty’ hair. It’s not really dirty. I’m talking about hair that you haven’t washed for a day or two, and you haven’t done a mud run or been cutting drywall for a remodel.
Your skin, including your scalp, produces oils that are good for your hair. Wash your hair every day and you’ll have less oil. There is a limit to this: too much oil can be problem, and some people produce more oil than others. Everyone’s chemistry is different.
Now, clean hair is a wonderful thing, too. It feels so good and it looks great, and it plays really well with your favorite hair products. It will also take color better than unwashed hair.
How do you get clean hair? Easy. Find a great clarifying shampoo, or make a thick liquid of baking soda and water, letting it sit your wet hair for a few minutes before rinsing. This will get your hair really clean. Then follow with a professional quality conditioner and, if you have naturally dry skin, a nurturing oil for your hair.
Granted, it may not style as easily. And if you have naturally curly hair, it may be pretty wild at this point, but beautifully so! Ask your stylist, but this is typically what you want to do before getting new color.
Your clean hair, with conditioner, will also feel great to the touch. Heavily styled hair may look fantastic but often won’t be so friendly to touch, and you may not want someone touching your freshly styled hair if you’re headed for the red carpet, catwalk or wedding!
Styled hair with lots of hairspray, for example, can look great but it’s stiff and sort of rough to the touch. We saw some styles on the red carpet at the recent Tony Awards that were sleek and edgy-cool, but they probably weren’t very soft to the touch.
Simply, it’s a tradeoff. Sometimes you’ll want that elegant updo, requiring lots of styling hold. Other times you want it to be soft and touchable with an intoxicating aroma. Headed for that prom or wedding, you’ll probably go for the strong hold. Going on a great date? Soft and clean with lots of body is probably better. Hard to get both in the same package!